Geno Smith staying focused amid disastrous season
The Jets may go in a direction other than Geno Smith next year, but he’s still keeping his head up entering the final three games of this year.
At 2-11, the New York Jets are enduring one of their worst seasons in recent memory. Starting quarterback Geno Smith has been one of the primary culprits, but he isn’t ready to hang his head in defeat as the regular season winds down.
Speaking at a charity function Tuesday, Smith acknowledged that his play needs to be more consistent, but also said, “I’ve shown flashes of being a Pro Bowl-caliber quarterback,” according to Newsday. The second-year quarterback began the year as the starter, only to lose it to Michael Vick before regaining it two weeks ago.
It’s been a challenging season for Smith, and it could lead the Jets to drafting his replacement in next year’s draft. Despite this, there are still three games left to be played this year, and Smith is staying positive knowing there’s time left for him to show everyone what he’s capable of.
“I just trust in my faith, trust in my support system; my teammates, my coaches, my family members and just believing in [myself],” Smith said. “I have the utmost amount of confidence in myself and my teammates and I truly believe that we’re going to be successful.
“It’s almost exciting to think about all the room for improvement that we have. But at the same time, we’ve got to really hone in on the ‘right now.’ “
Smith has the support of his teammates, particularly defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson, who said the quarterback “comes in poised, no matter how bad the game is or how bad of a game he has.” Unfortunately for Smith, he’s produced more bad games this season, struggling with turnovers and failing to jump-start a stagnant Jets offense. He’s thrown multiple touchdowns in a game just once this season.
Despite an early pick-six against the Minnesota Vikings last week, Smith rebounded for one of his best games of the year, going 18 of 29 for 254 yards and one touchdown, while chipping in six rushes for 33 yards. The Jets, however, could not get it done in the red zone and lost in overtime.
For the year, Smith has completed 166 of 287 passes for 1,778 yards (57.8 percent) with eight touchdowns and 12 interceptions. He, along with head coach Rex Ryan, face an uncertain future in New York that could see both let go this offseason.
The Jets take on another 2-11 team, the Tennessee Titans, in Week 15 before facing a much tougher schedule the rest of the way. They host the New England Patriots in Week 16 and then head to Miami to face the Dolphins to end the year. If Smith can play well in those games, perhaps he can give the Jets enough reason to give him the chance to start again next season. Smith might not have the stats of a Pro Bowl quarterback, but after just two seasons, he might not be a lost cause either, even if it takes a different coach or different team to help him reach the level he believes he can play.